22 October, Friday – Check and balance

Oct 22 — St John Paul II, Pope

He is credited with the fall of communism in his native Poland. Pope John Paul II died on April 2, 2005 and was canonized by Pope Francis on September 30, 2013. Pope John Paul II’s feast day is celebrated on October 22nd.

Rm 7:18-25
Lk 12:54-59

How is it you do not know how to interpret these times?

In today’s gospel, Jesus makes an important distinction between knowledge of our physical world and that of our spiritual reality. As He points out, we are able to discern from the clouds and the winds whether it is going to be a hot or rainy day but yet, remain clueless about moral questions over right and wrong.

Jesus’ rebuke to the crowds remains ever relevant today, in a world where modern seers seek to ascertain not just the weather but the economy, and even the psychological state of their fellow men by examining outward signs and ‘indicators’ such as inflation, unemployment rates and whatnot. Worse yet, many of these predictions are no more accurate than the ruminations of the man on the street.

As one of my favourite characters from the TV show Grey’s Anatomy once remarked, “The weatherman is wrong half the time and yet he gets to keep his job!”

As Jesus has rightly pointed out however, our present understanding of right and wrong are no better than that of the crowd in His time. In our hyperconnected and hyper-opinionated world of today, we continue to be swayed by a multitude of disparate voices in the global court of social media over important questions such as how to live our lives or how to raise our children. All one needs to do is to peruse the various parenting forums that are now available to us at the click of a hyperlink.

How then is a disciple of Christ to discern right from wrong and ascertain what is to be done in this hyper-confused world of ours today? The answer can be found in today’s reading from St Paul. In his letter, St Paul speaks of taking delight in the law of God in our inner selves. More importantly, he concludes that it is only Jesus who can deliver us from sin and confusion.

Let us lean more heavily on our Lord for His guidance and protection.

(Today’s OXYGEN by Jacob Woo)

Prayer: Lord, we ask for Your continued guidance and love. Good Shepherd, may we never stray too far from Your sight.

Thanksgiving: We thank the Lord for His constant love for us, for even in our waywardness, He continues to seek out His lost sheep.

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